Monday 14 October 2013

Miss Master.

Deviating a little from the whole Disney theme and what not that I have been doing. I work in a supermarket. Yay me it's money whatever. It's not what I did my degree in. I did my degree in Music and then a postgrad in Radio and Television production. About two years ago I was getting fairly fed up in work and had wanted to go back to college simply to get the title of "Master" to go along with my BMus and Postgrad so I went back and did a Masters in Broadcast Production.

I had already done a Bachelor of Music degree and a Postgraduate higher diploma in Radio and Television production in Maynooth as well as a tonne of work experience in radio.  The course itself was pretty similar in content to the Postgrad I had done and I suppose since it started out as if people had never done radio or television before it was a bit basic sometimes which was surprising for a Masters. The pace moved pretty quickly though so the basics didn't last long enough for it to bother me having done some of it before.

Unlike in Maynooth where everything radio was done across one semester and then we moved on to everything television on this Masters it was mixed so this week we might have done radio and next move to the television studio.

I did really like the fact that in the radio studio we were the ones in control of everything desk included. In Kairos they had a separate sound tech that came in to work the desk any time we were in studio so we never got any experience on a desk. They were training us to produce radio shows and talk on air and I haven't been to one station where the presenter isn't running the desk themselves so for them not to train us on the desk just seemed really stupid to me. On the masters we had alot of chances to work the desk and the studio was open to us to use anytime we wanted to practice which was great as well. On any radio show we were divided into teams and everyone got a chance to try each role that was needed to create a show which  was great.

One of the other things we had to do for the Masters was a documentary in both Radio and Television. For Radio I chose to do my documentary on a Showband from the 1960s called the Red Seven/Columbia showband. I did have personal reasons for my interest in them as my father had driven them to their gigs at one point so I was interested in their story. I read their book and then chose seven of the members from across the years the band were together for to interview and well this is how it turned out.
The Swinging Seven

In the television end of things we had to do our own documentary whereas in Kairos it was in teams of three or four. Working on our own for the documentary was a little difficult when it came to shooting and other members of the class were unavailable to go to the location of certain peoples documentary shoot. It meant you would have to pull in other people with little experience of the camera or sound to help out when it should have been the class but it was a good learning curve I suppose.

The television studio was also run alot better on the Masters than in Kairos I thought. We were in it for approx six weeks three of those weeks being practical. The first week we had to try everything but after that if we didn't want to present we didn't have to. I prefer the sound end of things so managed to get a little bit of experience on the sound desk in the television studios gallery on this course which again I failed to get in Kairos.
 The main thing we were marked on was directing but it was good as well to be able to get experience on camera, VT, Vision mixer, Floor manager, PA and presenting. It was fun as well trying to do things related to what was going on in the world outside the studio as well so we had a St. Patricks day theme going on one day because it was the week before St. Patricks day.
It was kind of from the lecturer we had for all the television studio work that my blog was born as well. He encouraged us to take picture of everything we do and talk about it online. Like I need encouragement to take pictures ha I came home from Walt Disney World with over 3000 pictures the last time we were there.

The main reason I did the Masters was for the title. The experience was good though and it was a good break from work for a while and then of course at the end of the day I did get my title and can now proudly say that I am a Master even if I'm still sitting on a supermarket checkout!

Heartbeat of Home

Heartbeat of Home has had its world premiere in the Bord Gais energy theatre and I went along to see it.We booked the tickets late so we were a little high up in the theatre but the view was ok

Created by the Producers and Director of Riverdance, Heartbeat of Home is a music and dance spectacular featuring not only Irish dance but Flamenco, Afro-Cuban and Latin dancing to go with it. 

 The first half is describe as a “dream voyage” and pretty much going along the lines of people leaving home for distant shores yaddi yadda. It was good but the second half was a lot better I thought. The second half was a mix of cultures they had arrived at the new world and it was Irish dances mixed with Latin mixed with anything else they could throw in. My two favourite scenes included a dance with hurls and a sketch of the famous photo of workers resting on a girder high above New York’s Rockefeller Centre but Irish style. I loved this scene especially when they pulled back the steps to extreme basics even just for that split second or two. Projections added to the scenes made it all the more easier for an audience to imagine being carried away on these strange voyages with the dancers. 

The show also had some fabulous new music and two very pretty ballads including  “Lead me home” and at times all dancers were off the stage giving the fabulous band their moment of being centre stage which was well deserved. 

It was a fabulous show that fully deserved the three standing ovations it got the night we went. 

Thursday 10 October 2013

Retro Orlando

So following on from my retro Disney post. When we go to Orlando because we live nine hours away on a plane believe or not we don't just go to Disney. There are other parks in the area Universal Studios, Seaworld, Kennedy Space Centre, Wet and Wild to name a few. We visit all the main theme parks because we never know when we will get back to Florida again and 1995 was no different.

I mostly have pictures from Seaworld and Kennedy Space Centre.

We did visit Universal Studios at some point and back then they had a section with Casper the friendly ghost and the Flintstones house and stuff:

Seaworld had a Shamu show and a dolphin show with Dolly the dolphin the only other thing from photos that I notice is different from the park nowadays is the photo ops with the whale sculptures and the Budweiser horses were still in the park back then:

 We also started a small tradition of taking a picture beside the manatee statue every visit. This picture was taken in 2010:

We also went to Busch Gardens when we were there but this is the only photo I could find from that:

Kennedy Space Centre was the funniest. Not the actually park itself but the drive there. My parents had hired a car to drive around Orlando and I remember we got lost alot and driving to Kennedy Space Centre we got lost. We were almost there and running out of petrol when my mother suddenly shouted at my father to turn right which was towards Miami where the Kennedy Space Centre was straight ahead. My father had to find the nearest garage for petrol and then find his way back towards Kennedy Space Centre. We did get there eventually though: 

Lastly we had stayed in the Holiday Inn Sunspree resort in 1995 and the hotel had it's own character floating about some nights called Max the Raccoon: